My top tip for engaging with your audience?

Stay close to their pain.

If you want to write better emails, you need to know your audience well. But if you want to write great emails, you have to know their pain. You have to know it from the inside out. You have to feel it. You have to live it.

When the Two-Brain Business Tinker Group met with Todd Herman (author of “The Alter Ego Effect”) in New York in mid-January, one of the Tinkers asked Todd why he kept his one-on-one mentoring clients.

Now, I’m one of those clients. I know that part of the answer might have been his rate (it’s $80,000 for the year). But the real answer was genius: “I need to stay close to my audience’s pain.”

Though most of Todd’s business is done through seminars and group instruction (here’s his 90 Day Year program), he works with a small handful of people one-on-one because that’s where he can get closest to entrepreneurs in the trenches.

This is where most “mentorship” programs fail: They’re led by people who don’t rely on their businesses to pay for their groceries. And the same is true for most people looking to build an audience: They know little details about their audience, but they don’t actually feel their audience’s pain because they aren’t sharing the same path.


“I Am Them”


My email marketing works because my audience knows that I am them. I can write about hard things, like telling a client to leave the gym, because I’ve actually done it. I can say “don’t pay for a billboard” because I’ve done it and tracked the results. I can save them money, pain and time because of what I’ve gone through myself.

When a hospital group recently asked me for help, the first question was, “How can we get our audience to trust us?”

I said, “Be your own patient. Make an appointment through your website. Wait in your waiting room. Lie in your bed. Get closer to their pain.”

They said, “Well, we tried that, but our website didn’t work and we didn’t have time to fix it yet.”

You know what came next, right?

You can know their names. You can know their addresses. You can know which emails they’ve opened and how long it takes for them to convert.

But if you don’t know their pain, they won’t trust you.

Get in there!